Bullying and Harassment in our Schools
Bullying and Harassment are prevalent problems with significant, adverse consequences. Our nation's schools face longstanding challenges in preventing and effectively responding to instances of bullying and harassment. Bullying and harassment interfere with students' abilities to learn and to achieve high standards. And bullying and harassment can lead to even greater school safety problems. As a matter of sound education policy for all students, no student should be subjected to bullying or harassment that interferes with the student's opportunity to learn, whether based on race, color, national origin, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, or other characteristics.
To see special report on Bullying by Newswest9 TV on May 13, 2010 click on link below and then click on video:
STATE LAW: The Texas Education Code, Chapter 37 Section 37.001, requires each independent school district in Texas to have a local policy that prohibits bullying, harrassment, and making a hit list and ensures that district employees enforce those prohibitions; and provides as appropriate for students at each grade level, methods, including options, for:
1. managing students in the classroom and on school grounds
2. disciplining students; and
3. preventing and intervening in student discipline problems, including bullying, harassment, and making hit list.
Under the requirements of 37.001(a)(8), the school district is also required to have specific options developed under local policy that are appropriate to each grade level that provide for preventing and intervening in student discipline problems, including bullying, harassment, and making hit list. Under Texas Education Code, Chapter 25, Section 25.0342 a parent has an opportunity to transfer their child to another campus if their child has been determined by the school to have been bullied.
MISD's local policy (FF1) can be found along with other policies on the School Board webpage on the MSID website: www.midlandisd.net.
REPORTING: It is important for each student to report any bullying or threats to the nearest teacher or adult at school as soon as possible so school officials may take appropriate action. Additionally, teachers and adults in the school should be aware of how students are treating each other and to intervene when inappropriate behavior is recognized. Students should feel comfortable to approach staff with their concerns.
RESOURCES: A great resource is the school counselor who is trained to address the issues of bullying and harassment and to assist students and staff in dealing with the consequences.
This site includes a list of peer-reviewed articles related to bullying:
This site offers practical advice to students and parents about ways to respond to bullying at school:
The Texas Attorney General's Office offers information about cyberbullying, dating violence, and other safety issues:
A survey of middle school students' experiences with bullying shows that kids want the adults in school to pay attention and keep them safe.
Click here for a video interview with Dr, Brad Schwall with Cool Kids Channel:
R U Safe? was designed by the Texas Young Lawyers Association to educate children and their parents about online dangers and give them the tools needed to be safe while online. Click below to see the presentation: